2018 IAAF Diamond League Eugene: Javelin thrower Neeraj Chopra finishes 6thMay 26, 2018
India’s Commonwealth Games champion Neeraj Chopra finished sixth in the 2018 IAAF Diamond League at Eugene in USA with a best throw of 80.81m.
After a good show in Doha in May, where the 20-year old set a national record of 87.43m, Chopra was hoping to further improve his showing. But it turned out to be his lowest point of the season so far.
The event was dominated by Olympic champion Thomas Rohler from Germany, whose best throw was 89.88m. Compatriot and world champion Johannes Vetter was a close second with a throw of 89.54m, while Andreas Hofmann, the third German in fray, finished third with a throw of 86.45m.
In the previous three competitions that the national record holder participated, he consistently crossed the 85m mark.
After an outstanding throw of 85.94m during the Federation Cup athletics meet in Patiala earlier this year in March, Chopra further raised the bar at the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games. His gold-winning throw was 86.47m.
At the Doha one-day circuit, the world junior champion reached 87.43m, a personal best.
But after a strong show in the Doha event, a decline in performance will be a worrying factor for the Athletics Federation of India (AFI) as Chopra is considered one of the favourites to win a medal at the Asian Games starting August 18 in Jakarta.
Chopra will fly to Europe to train with other Indian throwers in preparation for Asian Games. He will be training under former German javelin great Uwe Hohn, India’s chief coach in the discipline. The national team will be based at Finland’s Olympic Training Centre in Kuortane.